Monday, March 20, 2017

Highly Sensitive People

I discovered something about myself today and it's made so many things fall into place. I'm a highly sensitive person (HSP). Yes, there actually is such a thing. 

In my fantasy novel, Angeline 43, Essa says that she can't bear to go to nightclubs because she gets sensory overload. At the time of writing it, I didn't even know about the HSP theory. It certainly matches my character. Here's a short excerpt about it:

The cab driver knew the place, which made me feel a little
uneasy. It was next to a well-known restaurant/nightclub, just my
favorite place to visit in the middle of the night. I had no choice.
After paying him an exorbitant fare, I entered the building, bracing
myself for sleaze, or just plain intimidation, although the outside
looked pretty neat and not covered in graffiti and peeling paint. But
I’d have to deal with glares of disapproval. I’d never been one to
dress up to the nines. Neither did I fit well in an alcohol and
smoke-infused environment due to my sensory issues. The smells
overpowered me—and the high noise levels when people were
intoxicated and fancy-free—something I’d never experienced.

Anyway, several of the following things are signs that I'm an HSP:

1. I don't like loud noises. We've moved next to a highway and I'm struggling to cut off to the noise. I used to hate discos when I grew up with the flashing lights and loud music.
2. I feel pain more than others. When the physiotherapist put some funny machine on me which vibrates and tingles on your skin (don't ask me the name), she had to set it so low because it hurt. 
3. I was often called too sensitive as a child and have been since by loved ones.
4. I feel the emotions / moods of others very intensely.
5. I need time to myself after a very busy day - I've even hidden in the bathroom before. :)
6. I don't handle caffeine or alcohol well.

HSP's are usually very creative / caring people. We have special talents but we also have challenges and are often misunderstood as difficult and hard to handle. Are you an HSP or do you have a child / spouse / sibling who is one?

You can take this test to find out. I scored a whopping 24!

I'd love to see the movie.


  1. It's an interesting concept. Even more interesting that you gave your character the quality without even knowing what it was.